Education

Five awarded scholarships from P.E.O.

Submitted by P.E.O. Chapter EJ of Bowling Green On Sunday, June 11, 2017, P.E.O. ‘s (Philanthropic Educational Organization) local Chapter EJ of Bowling Green held a reception to celebrate the awarding of four local recipients of scholarships given by P.E.O Ohio State Chapter and Chapter EJ. Callie Spears, Micaela Schempf , Elizabeth Webb, and Cassidy Williford received scholarships from the Ohio Scholarship Fund awarded to Ohio high school students who are enrolled to continue their education.In addition, Jenna Schonter, also a high school student, received the first Barbara Klopfenstein Book Scholarship offered by Chapter EJ of Bowling Green. The five scholarships totaled $3,310. P.E.O. is an international society of women who are dedicated to supporting women as they seek to improve themselves through education. The sisterhood proudly makes a difference in women’s lives with six philanthropies that include ownership of a women’s college, Cottey College, and five projects that provide higher educational assistance to women just beginning their college educations, to women who have had their educations interrupted, and to women who are seeking advanced degrees. P.E.O. also offers loans at 2% interest to students in need of money to continue their education. Please contact Sharon Libby, President, Chapter EJ if you are interested in more information about P.E.O. or it’s scholarships, grants, and loans. General information and contact information can be found on the public portion of the P.E.O. website. PEO 2017 OHIO SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENTS   ELIZABETH WEBB Parents:  Matt & Jodi Webb 2017 BGHS Graduate Will be attending Ohio State University Major:  Public Affairs     CASSIDY WILLIFORD Parents:  Jo & Marina Williford 2017 BGHS Graduate Will be…


Horizon Youth Theatre celebrating its 20th anniversary, July 15

From HORIZON YOUTH THEATRE Horizon Youth Theatre will celebrate at its 20th Anniversary Gala, Saturday, July 15,  6-9 p.m. at the Simpson Building Banquet Room 1291 Conneaut Ave., Bowling Green. Join past and present members of Horizon Youth Theatre as they celebrate the troupe’s 20th anniversary. The evening will include performances, food, door prizes, and special guests. Tickets are available online now at horizonyouththeatre.org. Purchase tickets before Saturday July 1 at only $10 apiece. Starting July 1, ticket prices increase to $15 per person. Only 180 are available and this event is expected to sell out. Schedule of events: 6 p.m. Red Carpet Extravaganza (Heavy hors d’ouevres will be served) 7 p.m. Entertainment and Awards 8 p.m. Post-Party (Dessert reception) Door prizes include 2017-2018 HYT season tickets and many other theater-related gifts. For information and tickets: http://horizonyouththeatre.org/2017/05/20-anniversary-gala/


Young Africans leaders congregate at BGSU to learn from Ohio & each other

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The future of Africa is at Bowling Green State University. The university is hosting 25 organizers and activists as part of the Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders. The institute hosts 1,000 fellows at institutions across the country. (http://bgindependentmedia.org/bgsu-hosting-young-african-leaders/) A conversation with nine of fellows included men and women from Mauritania and Niger in the northern end of the continent to Zimbabwe near the southern tip. The issues they were concerned with were similarly broad, from helping those caught up in the sex industry, education, and environmentalism. And they said they were finding ways of addressing those issues here in the Northwest Ohio meeting with civic leaders and during outings as close to home as the farmers market and as distant as Columbus and Detroit. Tuesday they toured the Bureau of Criminal Investigation lab and crime scene building. Jon Sprague, the director of the Governor’s Center for the Future of Forensic Science at BGSU, also spoke about the opioid crisis. Yet their greatest source of support and knowledge, they said, was each other. “I think the best art of this program was my colleagues,” said Chibuzor Azuuike, of Nigeria. “Africa has to move forward .So meeting people who are of like-mind, who are very passionate about making an impact back at home, is important. I’ve learned a lot from them, and we hope to partner on projects.” Loice Kapondo, of Zimbabwe, said in the week they’ve been at BGSU “we’ve been sharing stories formally and informally. … Their strategies are easy to adapt to my country because of the similarities.” While Africa is…


BG’s Scruci tries to dispel rumors about bond issue

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Bowling Green Superintendent Francis Scruci tried to stop the rumor mill from churning Monday evening. For 90 minutes, he presented details and answered questions from a packed meeting room at the public library about the school district’s building plans and the bond levy to support them. Scruci has heard “all kinds of stories” about the district’s plans. “We wanted to get this information out now,” he said. “We want to get out in front of those” rumors about costs, cuts, kids and more. So he started by explaining the building plans and the $72 million cost to taxpayers. “I’m going to be the first to tell you that’s a lot of money, and we know that,” Scruci said. The 6-mill bond issue will appear on the November ballot for the projects. “Schools are always going to be the investment in the future in every city,” he said. “If we kick the can down the road, the cost is going to grow.” For the owner of a house valued at $100,000, that means an extra $210 a year. But since the average house value in Bowling Green is $170,000, Scruci said that would add up to $357 a year. And for those on the higher end, with a $250,000 home, the bond issue would mean another $525 a year. When he said the bond issue was for 37 years, someone in the audience whistled. “People are going to say that’s a lot of years, and it is,” Scruci said. But a bond issue with fewer years would mean greater payments that could be…


BG high students experience the magic of London

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Bowling Green High School students who traveled to London last week experienced a foreign culture and a little bit of magic. Drama teacher Jo Beth Gonzalez accompanied eight students on a tour of London. The tour organized by E.F Educational Tours also included 35 teachers, students and parents from London. The students and their families were responsible for raising all the money to pay for the trip. No district funds were used. The trip left June 15 and the bleary-eyed travelers returned on June 21, having experienced five-and-half packed days in London and Stratford, England. Gonzalez and four of the students gathered two days after their return to discuss the trip. These are early impressions. Gonzalez said. The full impact on the students probably won’t be felt for a year, as they absorb what they experienced. Tressa Greiner, who will be a sophomore in August, said that she’d always loved the score from the musical “Wicked.” Getting to see it on the London stage was something else again. “It was really magical.” While most of the students who went were involved in the school’s drama program, Greiner hasn’t been able to fit it into her scheduled. Gonzalez said they all hope that will change next year. Julia Maas, who will attend Bowling Green State University in fall to study physical education and health, was also impressed with the musical. She’d seen it before, but now she saw it in a new light. “The characters were so clear and bold.” The characters were given a different interpretation and accent by the British cast, said Elaine…


BG schools to hold public forum on bond issue

Bowling Green City Schools will hold a community forum Monday, June 26, from 6:30 to 8 p.m., at the Wood County District Public Library, 251 N. Main St., Bowling Green. The forum will give community members a chance to ask questions and get information about the school district’s November bond issue to build new schools.  


BGSU’s Pathways of Promise program gets state funding

By OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS The Ohio Department of Higher Education recently approved $5 million in funding for projects that will enhance the quality of higher education throughout the state while making it more affordable for students by stabilizing or reducing tuition rates. Bowling Green State University received $750,000 for its PK-16 Pathways of Promise (P³) project. P³ proposes to develop and field-test a scalable model for identifying key performance indicators of college-readiness in university data systems. The data is then shared with PK-12 partners, building a system for continuous program improvement for institutions of higher education and local education agencies. Dawn Shinew, dean of the College of Education and Human Development, was excited to learn the project had been funded. “This project makes a lot of sense and has the potential to have a significant impact, not only for BGSU’s students, but for P-20 education in the state of Ohio.” Shinew serves as a co-principal investigator on the project along with Dr. Brian Campbell, associate dean for Operations, Analytics and Assessment, and Dr. Matthew Lavery, assistant professor, School of Educational Foundations, Leadership and Policy. The original pilot of the program began in summer 2016 after Shinew noticed a theme in conversations she had had with local superintendents – they didn’t have good data about how their students do in college. Shinew discovered that the data was available, it was just a matter of what could be pulled that was meaningful and respecting the students’ privacy. In June, data was shared with six local school districts: Bowling Green, Springfield, Fostoria, Otsego and Maumee and Toledo School for the Arts,…


Dream comes true in Horizon Youth Theatre’s “Cinderella”

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Sky Frishman is an old hand at playing Cinderella. The 2017 graduate of the Toledo School for the Arts first played Cinderella when was 9 in the Horizon Youth Theatre’s “Cinderella, the World’s Favorite Fairy Tale.” “In My Own Little Corner” from the score of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Cinderella” has even been her go-to song for showcases and auditions. Now Frishman gets to put that favorite tune in context as the lead in Horizon Youth Theatre’s production of “Cinderella.” The musical runs June 22, 23, and 24 at 7 p.m. at Otsego High School. “Cinderella has always been one of my dream roles,” she said. Director Cassie Greenlee said the familiarity of the story is part of the attraction. Everyone knows the tale. That allows room for interpretation. The tale has lessons to teach. The story is about choice, she said, about how people choose to act toward others, talk to others, “and what happens when the choice is taken away from them.” The show’s featured bullies are the stepmother and two stepsisters. As the stepmother, Narnia Rieske is comically haughty. But the script explains that she’s anxious to marry off one of her daughters to the prince because they are running through the money left by Cinderella’s father. Not that the stepsisters (Terra Sloane and Melissa Mintz) are concerned. They are too self-involved, two brats who are always bickering with each other when not joining forces to bully Cinderella. The pair do a great job on one of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s funniest songs “Stepsisters’ Lament,” a deliciously comic number. Thomas Long’s prince also gets fleshed…


BG youngster’s paper cranes take flight to Japan

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Paper cranes cannot fly. Still some 400 origami cranes, folded with care by 12-year-old Daniel Schuman of Bowling Green, will take flight this week and return to their traditional home in Japan. Akiko Jones, the director of the Asian Studies Program at Bowling Green State University, will bring the cranes over with her when she travels there with students. She will place them at the Peace Memorial at Hiroshima, under the gaze of the statue of Sadako Sasaki. It was Sadako’s story, told in a book “Sadako and the 1,000 Cranes” that revived an ancient Japanese legend. Daniel wrote in his PACE reoirt that the legend maintained: “Anyone with the patience and commitment to make 1,000 cranes will make their one desired wish come true.” Sadako was a young victim of the atomic bomb attack on Hiroshima. She suffered from leukemia, and in her last days she began folding cranes. After she died and her story traveled around the world, others emulated her dedication. This is one of the many aspects of origami that 12-year-old Daniel discovered while doing a project on the craft for PACE, the Bowling Green program for gifted students. Daniel, the son of Gloria Gajewicz and stepfather Chris Gajewicz and Andrew Schuman, first got interested in origami at BGSU’s Cherry Blossom Festival, organized by Jones and staged by the Japanese Club. He was intrigued by the intricacies of the paper folding. Someone had already thought he might have an interest in the craft because he had a couple origami books that he’d received as gifts. His interest piqued, he delved…


Tickets available now for HYT’s “Cinderella”

Submitted by HORIZON YOUTH THEATRE Horizon Youth Theatre, celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, is proud to present Rodgers & Hammerstein’s CINDERELLA June 22, 23, and 24th at 7:00 pm at Otsego High School. The timeless enchantment of a magical fairy tale is reborn with the Rodgers & Hammerstein hallmarks of originality, charm and elegance. Originally presented on television in 1957 starring Julie Andrews, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s CINDERELLA was the most widely viewed program in the history of the medium. It was recreated in 1965 starring Lesley Ann Warren, and again in 1997 with Brandy as Cinderella and Whitney Houston as her Fairy Godmother; both were no less successful in transporting a new generation to the miraculous kingdom of dreams-come-true. As adapted for the stage, with great warmth and more than a touch of hilarity, the hearts of children and adults alike still soar when the slipper fits. This Enchanted Edition is based on the 1997 teleplay. Songs include “The Prince Is Giving A Ball,” “My Little Corner,” and “Impossible.” Directed by Cassie Greenlee, the musical features 55 students age 8 – 18 from many area schools including Bowling Green. The rest of the production team: Brittany Albrecht, stage manager; Tim Barker, choreographer; Kelly Frailly, music director; Christina Hoekstra, costuming; and Scarlet Frishman, assistant director. Stars are Skylar Frishman in the title role and Thomas Long as Prince Christopher; Olivia Strang and Narnia Rieske play Fairy Godmother and Stepmother. Other cast: Stepsisters are Terra Sloane and Melissa Mintz; King and Queen are Alex Evans and Anne Weaver; Lionel and Leo (Royal Stewards) are Bob Walters and Bella Truman. Understudies for the…


BG School Board seeks levy millage and duration for building project

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   The Bowling Green Board of Education made it official Tuesday evening by voting to ask the Wood County Auditor to determine the millage and the duration of a levy to pay for the district’s $72 million building project. The board voted at a meeting earlier this month to consolidate the three elementary schools into one centralized building, and to make major additions and renovations to the high school. That work will be funded by a bond issue. The board also agreed to build an addition to the middle school. That project, which will likely begin in September, will be financed through $4.6 million in permanent improvement funds. If the bond issue is approved by voters, the new consolidated elementary planned north of the current middle and high schools, could be completed by the summer of 2020. The high school could be completed by summer of 2021. The action taken Tuesday evening by the school board was the adoption of the necessity of the bond issue. The issue will appear on this November’s ballot. In other business at Tuesday’s meeting, the board hired Alyssa Karaffa as the new principal at Crim Elementary School. Karaffa has been the assistant principal at the middle school. Her new position has an annual salary of $75,000. The former Crim principal, Melanie Garbig, was hired earlier this month as the district’s executive director of pupil services. Also at the meeting, Superintendent Francis Scruci said he and the transportation supervisor had made a busing decision that would save the district nearly $100,000 a year. By law, the district has…


Reading takes flight with launch of 1,000 Book Before Kindergarten

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Reading a 1,000 books to a child before they enter school seems on the face of it a daunting task. Those little ones who attended the kickoff for the Wood County District Library’s 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten got five books under their belts just listening to Denise Fleming. Fleming’s book “Alphabet Under Construction” was the free book given to each child signed up for the program. Since it was a day made for gardening, as Fleming declared at the beginning of her presentation, the books she read were inspired by nature. Before started she planted a flower in the hair of Children’s Librarian Maria Simon, and then donned a ringlet of flowers. Then she set about cultivating a love of reading in children. She did it by turning the letters in her name into a parade of creatures and flowers. She offered a simple drawing lesson turning a series of ovals into faces of different ages. She stretched the kids’ imaginations when she asked them what they saw in an oval inside a squiggly circle. It could be an egg, a flower, a flat tire, a pancake with a pad of butter in the middle – Fleming added a pool of syrup around the edges. It could be a hot air balloon in a cloud, or the reflection of the sun in water. It could be, the author illustrator said, a story if you sewed those elements together with a narrative thread. Fleming is a big believer in the goal of the 1,000 books initiative. Literacy is essential. Yes, there’s the fun of stories but there’s also…


BG board votes to consolidate elementaries

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Bowling Green Board of Education took a leap Friday afternoon to invest $72 million in a consolidated elementary and new sections for the high school. The board is now hoping the voters follow their lead. After months of discussions and public meetings, the board voted 4 to 1 to go ahead with plans for one consolidated elementary, demolition of Conneaut and Kenwood schools, and major additions to the high school. The vote against the project came from board president Ellen Scholl, who supported an alternate plan for new Conneaut and Kenwood elementaries rather than the consolidation. Though the millage to cover the $72 million project has yet to be determined by the county auditor, it is estimated it could be close to 6 mills on the November ballot. If the issue is approved by voters, the new consolidated elementary planned north of the current middle and high schools, could be completed by the summer of 2020. The high school could be completed by summer of 2021, according to architect Kent Buehrer. Construction is also planned for the middle school, where a wing will be added to adequately handle the sixth grade class. That project, which will likely begin in September, will be financed through $4.6 million in permanent improvement funds that the district already has, so it will not be part of the bond issue in November. The three options being considered for the bond issue were: Renovations of Conneaut and Kenwood elementaries (Crim was renovated recently) and major high school additions: $54 million. Build new Conneaut and Kenwood elementaries, plus the…


BGSU adds academies to its summer offerings

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Patrick Nelson and Bowling Green State University’s Conference and Events Services staff didn’t get the usual break after graduation this year. No sooner had the caps and gowns been packed away, then the university hosted three major events – Fire School, Alumni College, and the New Music Gathering. As Memorial Day approached, they did get something of a respite, but not for long – the BGSU campus will be a busy place this summer. Nelson, who serves both as director if the Bowen Thompson Student Union and Conference and Events Services, said despite the loss of Buckeye Boys State, he expects the university will host as many visitors this year as last. Nelson estimates campus will welcome about 5,000 guests. That, he noted, does not include those who come for weddings. This summer eight weddings are scheduled for campus, twice as many as last year. This year the university is launching a Summer Academy program. These academies will bring high school age students to campus to experience some of the new programs the university offers. Two will be offered in June – Forensic Science and Health Career Exploration – with two robotics camps – BGSU Robotics and Art and Robotics, a collaboration with the Toledo Museum of Art – offered in July. (See http://bgindependentmedia.org/bgsu-offers-range-of-summer-camps-in-science-the-arts/) Assistant Vice Provost Andy Alt said: “These are exciting new programs we want to introduce to potential students locally and across the state.” “The university has facilities and great faculty and experts around in the summer,” he said. This allows the university to extend its offerings beyond the usual degree-oriented…


Reading 1,000 books to preschoolers adds up to kindergarten readiness

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The Children’s Place at the Wood County Library is building on its summer reading program for school age children to launch a new program for infants through preschoolers. The library is challenging parents and child caregivers, and others in youngsters’ lives to read them 1,000 books before they enter kindergarten. Children’s librarian Maria Simon said she’s wanted to offer the national initiative as a incentive to get parents, child caregivers, relatives, and maybe even a grandparent, via Skype reading to youngsters. The program will be launched Saturday, June 3, from 10 a.m. to noon in the library atrium. Denise Fleming, an award winning author and illustrator, will be on hand. Each child who is enrolled will receive a copy of Fleming’s book “Alphabet Under Construction,” which ties into the summer reading theme “Building a Better World.” If there’s more than one child in the family signing up, another Fleming title will be available. About 100 children have already been enrolled. Simon is hoping younger siblings will sign up as older children sign up for the summer reading program. The kick-off will also include an Early Childhood Resource Fair presented by the Wood County Early Childhood Task Force as well as local childcare providers and agencies. Simon said each booth will have some sort of literacy activity. She said she’s letting them know about Fleming’s other books – she’s published more than 20 since 1991. Fleming will give a presentation to children and families, and then to those participating in the resource fair. Fleming lives in her hometown Toledo where she creates her illustrations painting…